Discover KSS
Enriching lives through choral excellence and community engagement...
Several choir members admiring the water feature behind Museum|London located in London, Ontario.

Karen Schuessler Singers

Themed choral concerts that speak to heart and mind

Karen Schuessler

Karen Schuessler

The connection we feel with choral music extends beyond our senses and resonates deep within us. Karen Schuessler invites singers and audiences to join her on a journey into the heart of the music that touches us all.

The vision of Karen Schuessler Singers is to create concerts that are not only entertaining and thought provoking, but that also lift spirits, lighten hearts and deepen souls.

KSS choristers are artists, continually developing their musical gifts and embracing new challenges. The choir performs three theme-based concerts each year, often in partnership with community-based organizations. Every concert season offers a variety of musical exploration with talented musicians, both vocal and instrumental. Individual concerts may feature renaissance madrigals, baroque cantatas, opera choruses, gospel, Broadway, jazz, folk music, world music or even Brit-pop. For every concert, Karen creates insightful concert notes to reveal the deeper meaning behind the music. Says Karen, “The power of the concert moment is that the audience is open and receptive to the beauty which the music and the choir wish to express.”

Celebrating 25 years of choral excellence

Karen Schuessler Singers (KSS) has been “Enriching lives through choral excellence and community engagement” for 25 years.

Denise PelleyIn 1993, Karen Schuessler founded the Karen Schuessler Singers (known then as the Village Singers) specifically to perform Missa Gaia/Earth Mass. KSS performed its first Missa Gaia/Earth Mass in May 1994. During this joyous, awe-inspiring celebration of Creator and Creation, the choristers sang with wolves and whales as the audience found itself transported to a higher place. Missa Gaia has since become the choir’s signature work—a favourite of choristers and audiences alike.

London jazz singer Denise Pelley has been performing Missa Gaia/Earth Mass with KSS since the beginning in 1994. Denise brings a special energy to each concert, and her soulful solos are always audience favorites.

Another signature work of KSS is Road to Freedom  – a tribute to the people who never lost hope for freedom as they traveled to Canada along the Underground Railroad, and those who helped to keep that hope alive. KSS offers both Missa Gaia/Earth Mass and Road to Freedom, available on CD.

Outside Carnegie HallHow do you get to Carnegie Hall?
Practice. Practice. Practice.

In 2010, six members of KSS performed at Carnegie Hall in New York City as part of a special concert production of Haydn’s Lord Nelson Mass. To sing on this world renowned stage was an absolute honour for the Karen Schuessler Singers – and living proof that practice pays off!

What is the vision for the next 25 years?

Explore new genres of music. Give musical voice to issues that are important to our world. Raise the quality and the impact of choir performances to an even higher level. Continue meaningful partnerships with community organizations, and share the unique KSS experience with more and more audiences both at home and outside of London. And that’s just for starters!

Meet our Director

Karen Schuessler From an early age, Karen Schuessler knew that she was destined to become a musician. She reveled in exploring the moods and narratives suggested by each new piece of music that she learned. Originally from Michigan, Karen earned a Bachelor of Music degree at Michigan State University and a Master of Music degree in Organ Performance at the University of Michigan at Ann Arbor. In 1981 she moved to Canada.

As an accomplished performer, teacher and conductor of choirs (including Western University's award-winning women’s choir, Les Choristes, choirs at Wesley-Knox United Church in London, Ontario where she is Director of Music, and the Karen Schuessler Singers) she has come to feel a profound sense of responsibility to share music with others – music in a broad range of genres, with the rich and varied voices of composers of every time and place.

Experiencing live choral music. One of life’s true pleasures.

The Karen Schuessler Singers is committed to making affordable concerts so that everyone can access and enjoy the life-changing experience and excitement of live music making, but we can’t do it without you.

There are many ways to support KSS – purchasing season tickets, volunteering at events or becoming a donor. There are donor levels for every budget. All donations are tax deductible. Music is one of the greatest gifts you can share with others. Click here to learn more about supporting KSS.